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Gravel /rvl/ is a loose aggregation of rock fragments. Gravel is

classified by particle size range and includes size classes from granule- to
boulder-sized fragments. In the Udden-Wentworth scale gravel is
categorized into granular gravel (2 to 4 mm or 0.079 to 0.157 in) and
pebble gravel (4 to 64 mm or 0.2 to 2.5 in). One cubic metre of gravel
typically weighs about 1,800 kg (or a cubic yard weighs about 3,000

Gravel is an important commercial product, with a number of

applications. Many roadways are surfaced with gravel, especially in rural
areas where there is little traffic. Globally, far more roads are surfaced Gravel (largest fragment in this photo is
with gravel than with concrete or tarmac; Russia alone has over about 4 cm)
400,000 km (250,000 mi) of gravel roads.[1] Both sand and small gravel
are also important for the manufacture of concrete.

1 Geological formation
1.1 Modern production
2 Etymology
3 Types
4 Relationship to plant life A gravel road in Terre Haute, Indiana
5 See also
6 References
7 External links

Geological formation
Large gravel deposits are a common geological feature, being formed as
a result of the weathering and erosion of rocks. The action of rivers and
waves tends to pile up gravel in large accumulations. This can Gravel being unloaded from a barge
sometimes result in gravel becoming compacted and concreted into the
sedimentary rock called conglomerate. Where natural gravel deposits
are insufficient for human purposes, gravel is often produced by quarrying and crushing hard-wearing rocks, such as
sandstone, limestone, or basalt. Quarries where gravel is extracted are known as gravel pits. Southern England possesses
particularly large concentrations of them due to the widespread deposition of gravel in the region during the Ice Ages.

Modern production
As of 2006, the United States is the world's leading producer and consumer of gravel.[2][3]

The word gravel comes from the Breton language. In Breton, "grav" means coast. Adding the "-el" suffix in Breton denotes
the component parts of something larger. Thus "gravel" means the small stones which make up such a beach on the coast.
Many dictionaries ignore the Breton language, citing Old French gravele[4] or gravelle.[5]

Gravel often has the meaning a mixture of different size pieces of stone mixed with sand and possibly some clay. In
American English, small stones without sand mixed in are known as crushed stone.[6][7]

Types of gravel include:

Bank gravel: naturally deposited gravel intermixed with sand or clay

found in and next to rivers and streams. Also known as "bank run" or
"river run".
Bench gravel: a bed of gravel located on the side of a valley above
the present stream bottom, indicating the former location of the
stream bed when it was at a higher level.
Creek rock or river rock: this is generally rounded, semi-polished
stones, potentially of a wide range of types, that are dredged or
scooped from stream beds. It is also often used as concrete
aggregate and less often as a paving surface. Gravel with stones sized roughly between
Crushed stone: rock crushed and graded by screens and then 5 and 15 mm
mixed to a blend of stones and fines. It is widely used as a surfacing
for roads and driveways, sometimes with tar applied over it. Crushed
stone may be made from granite, limestone, dolostone, and other
rocks. Also known as "crusher run", DGA (dense grade aggregate)
QP (quarry process), and shoulder stone.[8]
Fine gravel: gravel consisting of particles with a diameter of 2 to
4 mm.
Lag gravel: a surface accumulation of coarse gravel produced by the
removal of finer particles.
Pay gravel: also known as "pay dirt"; a nickname for gravel with a
high concentration of gold and other precious metals. The metals are
recovered through gold panning.
Sand and gravel separator in a gravel pit
Pea gravel: gravel that consists of small, rounded stones used in
concrete surfaces. Also used for walkways, driveways and as a in Brandenburg (eastern Germany)
substrate in home aquariums.
Piedmont gravel: a coarse gravel carried down from high places by
mountain streams and deposited on relatively flat ground, where the water runs more slowly.
Plateau gravel: a layer of gravel on a plateau or other region above the height at which stream-terrace gravel is
usually found.

Relationship to plant life

In locales where gravelly soil is predominant, plant life is generally more sparse.[9] This outcome derives from the inferior
ability of gravels to retain moisture, as well as the corresponding paucity of mineral nutrients, since finer soils that contain
such minerals are present in smaller amounts.

See also
Construction aggregate

2. Mineral Commodity Summaries 2006 ( 2009
3. Industrial Sand And Gravel (Silica): World Production, By Country (
als/silica/silica_t11.html) 2009
4. Collins English Dictionary Complete & Unabridged 11th Edition. Retrieved 30 August 2012 from website:
5. Gravel, n., Oxford English Dictionary Second Edition on CD-ROM (v. 4.0) Oxford University Press 2009
6. "gravel." Noah Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language. 2015. (8 January 2015)
7. "Gravel, n." def. 1. Whitney, William Dwight. The Century Dictionary; an Encyclopedic Lexicon of the English
Language,. Vol. 3. New York: Century, 1889. 2607. Print.
8. "Quarry Process - QP, DGA - NJ, NY, NYC, PA" (
9. C.Michael Hogan. 2010. Abiotic factor. Encyclopedia of Earth. eds Emily Monosson and C. Cleveland. National
Council for Science and the Environment ( Archived (http
s:// 8 June 2013 at
the Wayback Machine.. Washington DC

External links
Media related to Gravel at Wikimedia Commons

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This page was last edited on 11 October 2017, at 12:16.

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